Dumplings are something that is enjoyed across the globe in our modern world, but they first gained popularity in China. Because of their diverse history, dumplings come in a variety of styles. Each style features a different taste, texture, and appearance. Certain styles are traditionally paired with different meals and learning more than one dumpling style is essential if you’d like to incorporate them into your cooking.
4 Styles of Dumplings
This crescent-shaped dumpling is the most common Chinese dumpling. An opaque wheat dough wrapper is used to hold the pork, scallions, and cabbage. There is a traditional dipping sauce of soy sauce, vinegar, and sesame oil that compliment the flavors in the dumpling filling without overwhelming it.
2. Har Gao
This dumpling is either oval or crescent-shaped with a wrapper made from wheat and tapioca starch. Har Gao dumplings are filled with pork fat, shrimp, and bamboo shoots before being steamed. These dumplings hold a smooth and stretchy consistency, with 7-10 pleated folds along the exterior. As the dumplings are steamed the pork fat becomes liquid creating a very juice filling.
3. Bao Zi
Unlike the last two dumplings we mentioned, Bao Zi dumplings don’t have a thin translucent wrapper. Instead, thick wheat dough creates a bun-like appearance. The filling in Bao Zi dumplings can vary from barbecued pork to red bean paste, to sweet yellow custard and much more! You can make your own unique flavor using tofu, chicken, pork, pineapple, mushroom, and more.
Wontons are a traditional Japanese style of dumpling that can be served steamed, fried, or boiled. The dough used is reminiscent of Italian ravioli, only thinner. The dough is cut into small squares before the filling is placed in the center of each square. Ground pork or shrimp are the most common fillings used in wontons, but other varieties can be found depending on your location. The dough is crimped or folded along the top to hold the filling in as the dumpling is cooked. Unlike many other dumplings, there is not a right or wrong way to close the top of wontons. Wontons filled with ground beef are usually fried.
Learning to make each of these four dumpling styles is challenging at first, but achievable for almost anyone. The quickest way to learn and to ensure you’re following traditional dumpling making methods is to attend one of our dumpling classes. In our dumpling classes, you’ll review each of these dumpling styles along with different fillings you can use inside them! Be sure to contact The Dumpling School today for more information.
Team building is the most important investment you can make for your people. In a world where attention is primarily focused on making the client happy, businesses often forget about their most valued asset, their employees. Team building not only boosts the morale of employees, but it can also increase the success of any business. It builds trust, alleviates conflict, encourages communication, and increases collaboration. Effective team building can be adventurous and enjoyable if you get creative. Imagine trying a team-building cooking class? Here are six reasons why your next team-building exercise should be a corporate cooking class:
6 Reasons To Try a Corporate Cooking Class
Inspiring Creativity and Innovation
Innovation is a vital part of any trade or profession. Employees at all levels and roles need a sense of creativity, agency, empowerment, and excitement. Boredom and routine have a way of dragging team morale. When it comes to corporate cooking or dumling-making classes, the focus is on preparing a perfect dish. But then your mind begins to wonder to bring out a competitive, innovative spirit to make your meal more creative. A team-building cooking class provokes out of the box thinking while interacting with co-workers.
When you’re on the job, it can be hard to talk about anything that isn’t work-related. How much do you know about your co-workers? Corporate dumpling classes are so much more than a cooking class. They allow a reason for you to get to know everyone in a more personal way. You get to understand who they are outside their work life. It also allows you to show who you are, more than a colleague. The deeper and meaningful conversations increase your chances of developing a stronger bond and leveraging strengths. The team’s productivity is only going to increase because you all enjoy each other’s accompany.
Learning New Skills
Not everyone cooks or even knows how to cook. A corporate cooking class not only introduces people to new ways of thinking about food and preparing food but demonstrates that cooking is approachable. The way you learned skills in your job will be the same way you learn new skills in the corporate cooking class. Being open to learning new skills in the kitchen, you will also have the same mindset when it comes to your work. At the Dumpling School, our dumpling parties incorporate learning and fun, we don’t teach you how to make dumplings from scratch but we teach how to fold them in different shapes, how to stuff them and more!
Encouraging Team Work
Working in unity with a team determines how well you perform individually. At some point in everyone’s career, you need the help and input of the other person to excel and improve at your work.
Corporate team building cooking classes address unity head-on. Cooking classes are a collaborative environment. Each staff member is delegated different tasks, but you all work together to create the dish. Not everyone is going to be fond of each other, but you will be required to work together to put out a final product. When you transfer this principle in your workplace, you will learn to tolerate different personalities and work cohesively together.
Improving Problem Solving Abilities
The cooking process isn’t always easy; it can even be a nightmare. The added pressure that comes from working together, accidents are bound to occur. Many things can go wrong, such as running out of ingredients, injuries, or burnt food. You need to be able to figure out an effective plan B. Team building is all about “how do we solve the problem together?” Cooking classes encourages logical team thinking for them to later use in the workplace.
Connecting In-House and External Personnel
More often than not, on-site employees and external workers have not met. In today’s decentralized workspaces, employees can regularly collaborate without meeting in person. Face-to-face is another way to increase trust across team members and departments. Even strangers can bond while preparing a meal together. The new employee encounters will only generate new work collaborations and productivity.
Cooking together can cook up far more than just good food. Corporate dumpling classes help employees generate new ideas and build stronger bonds with their colleagues. The classes are only going to cook up a great meal while bringing more innovation throughout your organization. Ready to get your team in to make delicious dumplings and other Taiwanese-American food? Contact the Dumpling School today!
The idea of taking a cooking class sounds fun and exciting. It’s an opportunity to learn something new in the kitchen that you could make a part of your weekday menu, or for a special occasion. Maybe you want to learn to make something specific, such as dumplings. You can enhance your culinary skills and expand your knowledge by taking the dumpling classes that you’ve been thinking about for a while. Cooking classes aren’t meant to be intimidating, but to provide creative culinary ideas and firsthand experiences regarding food preparation, presentation and ultimately, appreciation. Here are some of the benefits to be had from taking dumpling classes and cooking classes in general.
- Get to Really Know Your Kitchen
There are many beautiful homes with gorgeous kitchens, but some are missing the full display of culinary magic. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ in 2015, U.S household spending on food eating out accounted for 43% ($3,008) of all food spending. Taking cooking classes will not only help you to save money but also help you to become knowledgeable about the things that exist in your kitchen. You will become familiar with cooking tools and appliances and how to use them to make lovely dumpling meals and other dishes yummy dishes.
- Enhance Cooking Skills
Those who can cook can always learn something new, and those who can’t can take classes to learn how to make simple dishes. Taking cooking classes offers a way to improve your cooking skills. There are many possibilities in the culinary world, including dumpling making, plus a whole lot more. Cooking classes will train you in the art of cooking and allow you to improve on what you already know how to do. You will become far better at cooking.
- Build Self Esteem
You may not think about it much or at all, but taking cooking classes could boost your self-esteem. If dumplings are a family tradition and you happen to be the child that doesn’t know how to make it well or at all, you could feel some level of anxiety if you are asked to make it for a family event. Taking dumpling cooking classes will help you to be more competent in dumpling crafting and in so doing, will help you to be more confident in making dumpling dishes for your family. Taking cooking classes, in general, will help to build your self-esteem by serving as a guide to maneuver the kitchen and make fantastic meals.
- Take You on a Cultural Journey
What’s more exciting than learning to make a new dish? Cooking classes can promote cultural awareness by exposing you to cultural cuisines that can elevate your style of cooking and teach you about food in different cultures that you might enjoy.
Taking cooking classes is beneficial if you have a desire to improve your cooking skills and know your way around your kitchen. It will help you to learn how to make unique and special dishes, be it your family’s dumpling dish or a dish that you simply want to try. Don’t hesitate and sign up for cooking classes and contacting The Dumpling School for more information.
Lunar New Year is just around the corner and coming up with food items to prepare for your gathering is coming down to the wire! Continuing on from our previous blog, we have four more dumplings you should consider making for your Lunar New Year gathering with your friends and family. If you are interested in learning more about these great dumplings and how to craft them, be sure to give us a call to inquire about our custom dumpling-making classes to learn these advanced recipes! Our main dumpling classes focus around pork, chicken, veggie and seafood dumplings. Below are four dumplings that will be a hit during Lunar New Year as well as being great snacks for any occasion or event!
- Pork-and-Crab Soup Dumplings – Soup dumplings are a great dumpling to make as they offer two layers of flavor and texture. There is the dumpling itself while also giving the consuming party a warm soup flavor when they bite into these delicious creations. However, making soup dumplings can get tricky so you want to remember that the secret to getting the soup inside the dumpling is to set the rich stock with gelatin before folding it into the dumpling skin along with the meat filling of your choosing.
- Pork Dumplings with Aged Black Vinegar – Potstickers are a fan favorite when it comes to easy eating dumpling choices and pork filling is always a good route to take. When making these dumplings, be sure to wrap your filling in Gyoza wrappers then fry and steam the dumplings for a juicy, tender, and crisp experience.
- Spinach and Tofu Dumplings – While meat is always a preferred filling for dumplings we can’t leave out the vegetarians and non-meat eaters we know. These spinach and tofu dumplings will be a nice alternative that will make everyone feel involved with the new year celebrations while abiding by individually dietary needs.
- Steamed Shrimp Dumplings with Chinese Chives – Using the wrapper of your choosing, you can make heart-warming dumplings that combine your favorite seafood dish with some healthy greens!
We hope that everyone has a great Lunar New Year and has the opportunity to make some of these creative dumplings for everyone to feast one! If you would like to learn how to make dumplings of your very own, be sure to contact The Dumpling Room for the rates of our traveling dumpling school in and around Cambridge and Boston, MA.
The Lunar New Year is almost upon us where we will be entering the year of the pig! It is time to start planning your where you will be celebrating and what will be served as you gather with family and friends for this joyous time. Easy to make and consume items will probably be the type of food you will be looking to have for your guests. Nothing is easier and more delicious than preparing scrumptious dumplings for your Lunar New Year festivities! Below are some popular dumplings that will be a surefire hit!
- Boiled Chinese Dumplings – Traditional boiled Chinese dumplings are a staple to any Asian celebration where you can stuff them with any filling of your choosing.
- Pork Dumplings with Chile-Sesame Sauce – Turn your creative juices on by crafting delicious dumplings filled with pork, shiitake mushrooms, bok choy, scallions, and ginger. Once you are done making the dumplings, cover them in a chile-sesame sauce for an enhanced flavor that will have your guests wanting more.
- Cabbage, Watercress, and Pine Nut Dumplings – If you are a fan of boiled dumplings then you will love the combination of cabbage, watercress, and pine packed into freshly boiled dumplings that can be topped off with a little bit of soy sauce.
- Pork-Kimchi Dumpling Pancakes – Take traditional dumpling making and give it a new groove with these creative fried dumpling pancakes! The same great flavors of pork and kimchi but now in a crisp and round pancake form!
- Shrimp-and-Pork Dumplings With Bamboo Shots – Whether you wrap these dumplings in wonton wrappers or use cornstarch, wheat starch, water, and shortening, you are sure to have a fan favorite ready to go for the new year.
Be sure to check back with us to learn about more dumplings for Lunar New Year as the date approaches us! Contact The Dumpling Room for information on our pork, chicken, veggie, and seafood dumpling classes in and around Cambridge & Boston, MA as well as custom classes to learn these advanced recipes!